Indiana Dunes Portage Lakefront and Riverwalk

News & Resources


Proposals Sought for National Lakeshore’s Chellberg Farm

November 13, 2014 - Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore News Release

The National Park Service is looking to reestablish a working agricultural landscape at Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore’s Chellberg Farm. Proposals are invited from the private sector to lease the historic farm, on a long-term basis, to conduct sustainable agriculture enterprises.

The properties offered for lease in this request include the outbuildings and fields at the Chellberg Farm located at 900 N. Mineral Springs Road, Porter, IN. The National Park Service will also consider an option to include the Charles P. Nelson House, located directly across the street from the farm, to be used as a residence.

The length of the lease is expected to be 10 years, but up to 60 years may be considered based on circumstances. The cost of the lease may vary, but will be benchmarked at 10% of gross revenue, with a 1% reduction for certified organic products.

Proposals will be evaluated on a number of factors including their compatibility with the preservation, protection and visitor enjoyment of the park, as well as being compatible with the park’s educational and interpretive programming.

Proposals must be submitted by January 9, 2015. Details on this Request for Proposals can be found online at: If you are interested in learning more about leasing these historic properties or in scheduling a site visit, please contact the national lakeshore’s Administrator Officer Liz McConnell at 219-395-1703.


National Lakeshore staff planning 50th anniversary

November 6, 2014 - Susan Emery, The Times

PORTER | The excitement was palpable Thursday as Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore officials unveiled plans to celebrate the park's 50th anniversary in 2016.
Superintendent Paul Labovitz welcomed more than 80 staff members, representatives from partner organizations and residents to a media event at the Indiana Dunes Visitor Center. The event fell on the same day as the 48th anniversary of the authorization of the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore, Labovitz said.
"We're kicking off a big thing for the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore," he said. "It's so much fun to see the energy in this room. Buckle your seat belts because we're gonna have a great time."
The Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore turns 50 years old on Nov. 6, 2016, and the National Park Service will celebrate its 100th anniversary that year.

Historical house tours a shore thing

November 3, 2014 - Sue Ellen Ross, Post-Tribune

INDIANA DUNES NATIONAL LAKESHORE — Many Lake Michigan beachgoers probably aren’t aware of the housing history that can be found in the Beverly Shores area of the National Park Service property.

The recent Century of Progress Homes Tour introduced more than 600 visitors to five houses that were constructed for the 1933 World’s Fair in Chicago. They were touted as “Model Homes of the Fair — Past, Present and Future.”

Dismantled in 1934, they were brought to Lake Front Drive in Beverly Shores via barge across Lake Michigan.

Two houses stand on the beach area and three are directly across Lake Front Drive on a steep hill.

“We’ve been offering these popular house tours for many years,” public information officer and Supervisory Park Ranger Bruce Rowe said. “There’s a large interest — tickets sell out fast.”

The National Park Service and nonprofit Dunes National Park Association host the annual tour. Reservations are required.

The tour explored the first floors of the Armco-Ferro House, Cypress Log Cabin and Guest House, the House of Tomorrow, the Florida Tropical House, and the Wieboldt-Rostone House.

US Army Corps to perform $3.2 million in restoration at Portage Lakefront Park

October 10, 2014 - Chesterton Tribune

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has been awarded a construction contract of $3,204,972.94 for the ecosystem restoration of 80 acres at Portage Lakefront Park.

U.S. Rep. Pete Visclosky, D-1st, announced the award in a statement released on Wednesday.

“This award is a significant milestone in our continued efforts to recapture our Lake Michigan shoreline for public use and to enhance economic opportunities throughout our region,” Visclosky said. “Today’s announcement is possible due to the public/private partnership between the City of Portage, led by Mayor James Snyder, the Portage Park Foundation, the federal government represented by the United States Army Corps of Engineers, and U.S. Steel to expand and improve the footprint of the Portage Lakefront Park.”

Canoes provide urban kids with an unforgettable experience

Canoemobile Lighthouse Charter SchoolChesterton, IN – East Chicago Lighthouse Charter School 6th grader, Brianna, had never been in a canoe before today. “It was amazing!” she said afterward. “It was more difficult to paddle and keep the boat steady than I thought it would be, but so much fun. I’d like to do it again.”

Thanks to a broad coalition of schools, nonprofits, local, state and federal agencies, Wilderness Inquiry’s Canoemobiles will provide hundreds of students with unforgettable experiences on their local waterways from the seat of a 24’ Voyageur canoe.

An extension of Wilderness Inquiry’s Urban Wilderness Canoe Adventures (UWCA), their Canoemobiles travel across America to bring environmental literacy and dynamic outdoor learning experiences to urban youth.

“Our urban waterways are an important—and incredibly effective—teaching tool for kids,” says Geof Benson, Executive Director of Dunes Learning Center. “Whether they are exploring the science below the water’s surface, as with our Riverwatch activity, or touring local lakes and rivers in a 24’ canoe—the learning connections made through these experiences stay with them far longer than anything they might read in books.”